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V/A - Ctrl-N [MDSQ002]

Topics Electronic

Ten tracks from Room, 1+0=everything, kataStatik, 2400W, Craque, Area, Time Slips By, Bitshifter, Puzzle, and Johnny Square are on Modsquare's third netlabel release.


Room is David Newman, an electronic artist based in Sheffield, UK. His work indulges in exploring electronic sound through evolving sound designs and arrangements. Working from a home studio, David has created works released by Audiobulb Records (UK), Saasfee (Germany) and net labels (UK) & (USA).

Transplanted to Chicago from St. Louis, MO, 0+1=everything is the musical outlet of Ryan Bockenfeld. In addition to self-released albums, 0+1=everything has appeared on the Conjugate Projekt's tribute to 2001: A Space Oddyssey and Lumptronic 6: Technotopia.

kataStatik (aka Chris Mandra) has been creating electro-acoustic music since the '80s and began writing music integrating orchestral instruments and interactive computer technology in the '90s. In the fall of 2004 he was awarded a fellowship to STEIM in the Netherlands to work on his performance interface, the "manDrum." He holds Masters Degrees in Computer Music and Ethno-musicology from The Peabody Conservatory at Johns Hopkins University and lives near Washington, DC with his wife, NPR Congressional Correspondent, Andrea Seabrook.

2400W is a collaboration between Matthew Mercer and William Selman (Warmdesk). Deriving their name as a reference to their shared-apartment-building's proximity to Western Avenue in Chicago, these two meld their minimal melodic, micro-sampled, yet glitchily-abstract aesthetics to form the project that is 2400W. &

For Craque--an incarnation of Matt R Davis--live performance is a key element and studio work is substantiated with materials from live improvisations and sound exploration. Collaborations have included Pauline Oliveros, Achim Wollscheid, Quantazelle, and Comma. Recently Craque scored the film Putain de Bordel de Merde and created sound textures for an OOTS Arts Collective gallery opening in Fullerton, CA.

Having performed live PAs alongside Scape One (Emoticon, Mass Transit), Todd Sines (Planet E), Quantazelle (subVariant), Proswell (Merck), Sub K (Adaptive Programs) and collaborated with Shadow Huntaz (SKAM), this is his debut recorded effort, with additional projects slated for subVariant and an as-yet unnamed German imprint.

Time Slips By is the music project of artists Ed Colmar and Joshua Goldenberg, based in Oakland, California. With thirty-five years of combined experience as performing and studio musicians/djs, their work across a wide spectrum of electronic-based styles has converged into a sound characterized by movements of haunting and emotional melodies,disrupted rhythms, and whispers of noise."

Josh Davis explores low-bit, high-energy music composed and performed on a Nintendo Game Boy as Bit Shifter. Made possible by the independent and covert development of custom-made musicmaking software cartridges, Bit Shifter's music adopts the playfulness inherent in the familiar Game Boy soundset and subverts it, repurposing it into the service of new and unexpected idioms. Bit Shifter's debut CD, Life's A Bit Shifter is available on 555 Recordings, and he has additionally released music with 8bitpeoples, Intikrec and Relax Beatme.

Jason Donnelly (aka Puzzle) is known internationally for his production work on many of the Loops For ACID CDs for Sonic Foundry's ACID software (now Sony's Screenblast ACID). Dj Puzzle's Scratch Tactics, ACID DJ 3.0, Designer Dance Tools, and Trance Solid NRG are just a few of the ACIDized Loops For ACID titles which have been produced by the team of Dj Puzzle and Bernard Turek, otherwise known as Peace Love Productions.

Detroit-native and Chicago-resident, Anthony Koerber creates dense beat constructions, layered melodies, and a near-pop-structure sensibility permeate most of his work, along with occasional distorted, languid vocals and 8-bit Gameboy-composed moments.


Reviewer: - - November 21, 2006
Subject: Reviewed on
MODSQUARE.COM is a website focused solely on reviewing and discovering abstract, experimental electronic music. And of course, they do compilations. Ctrl+N is the 3rd compilation release and the artists in it are as experimental as they come - crossing genres of glitch, idm, ambient, chiptune, drill and bass and almost even pop.

Room brings us the first track which is a sort of idm tune that prominently features piano style melodies reminiscent of the kind you would find in the Aphex Twin album, drukqs. What follows after are two more tracks that delve deeper into the realm of glitchy idm and âdrill and bassâ. Four great ambient-esque, glitchy and downtempo tracks make up the middle of the album. Almost relaxing, surprisingly, we are greeted on the way out by a lofi uptempo 8-bit track by Bit Shifter and another track that has an 8-bit vibe that doesnât quite sound 8-bit by Puzzle. A great sounding glitch pop track by Johnny Square rounds out the compilation giving the whole album a satisfying feeling of completion. Half melodic half noise, the compilation becomes its own entity as a whole and the tracks feel incomplete if listened alone. I especially liked how well the glitchy second part of the Orkis flowed into the sombre, eerie moods of Three Goes on Forever.

Stuff that gets my attention
03. Manic repression
With itâs super fast pitch shifted snares and pitched voice samples that seem to utter âwatermelonâ repeatedly, itâs hard to avoid paying attention when this track introduces itself to oneâs ears. Itâs weird, unexpected and totally experimental.

04. Fire Distinguisher
A dubby bassline and constant beat structure make this track a great intro to the downtempo section of the compilation. Repetitive throughout spiced with some scratched voice samples. It offers the much needed stability that was missing in the first 3 tracks.

07. Three Goes on Forever
This track keeps me on my toes as I listen for what happens next. The ominous soundscapes paint a picture that is applicable to post apocalyptic futures.

08. Transmode Virus
Excite excite. 8 bit. Most exciting structured track of the whole compilation keeps changing. A stand out if only because it was also much louder than the rest.

09. Warped space
The rising arpeggiated tune is really enjoyable. Warm sounding synth melody together with likeable female one shot vocal samples makes it all the better although a bit on the cute side. Just give it a listen. Unexpectedly, 3/4s through the track, we transcend into a completely different sounding ending that seems like a whole different track by itself. This surprisingly flows well with the next track which isâ¦.

10. CS drummer
Sounds to me like a fusion of folk, pop and glitch. High on noise and high on listenability.

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by Various Artists
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by Various Artists
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